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The space between the lower chest and groin is known as Abdomen. It contains various organs known as the esophagus, stomach, pancreas, liver, gall bladder & bile ducts, colon & Rectum and Appendix. Uncontrollable growth in the cells leads to Abdominal Cancer.

 

Types of Abdominal Cancer:

1. Esophageal Cancer: Cancer that occurs in Esophagus is known as Esophageal Cancer. The esophagus is a long, hollow tube that runs from your throat to your stomach. Esophageal cancer generally occurs in the cells which are found in the inside line of the esophagus. It is the sixth most common cause of cancer deaths and tobacco & alcohol use or particular nutritional habits & obesity is considered as a major cause for its occurrence.

 

2. Stomach Cancer or Gastric Cancer: The stomach is an organ located in between the esophagus and duodenum. It collects ingested food, partially digests it and releases it slowly into the duodenum for further digestion. The most common type of cancer that develops in the stomach is called adenocarcinoma. Possible risk factors are smoking, alcohol consumption, hot beverages, Helicobactor pylori infection, pickled foods, processed and red meat. It has vague symptoms so it’s quite difficult to diagnose it at an early stage.

 

3. Pancreatic Cancer: Pancreas is located behind the lower part of the stomach and is responsible for the secretion of enzymes that helps in digestion and hormones which help in regulating the metabolism of sugar levels. Generally, pancreatic cancer is diagnosed in the last stages and surgery may be suggested as a potentially curative treatment to improve the patient’s quality of life. It has no symptoms in the early stages but later stages may be followed by nonspecific symptoms such as lack of appetite and weight loss.

 

4. Liver Cancer: The liver is the organ located near the upper right area of the stomach. When cancer begins in the cell of the liver, it is known as Liver Cancer. Generally, surgery either with resection (removal of the tumor) or liver transplant is the only option to cure Liver Cancer. Patients who have good liver function are considered healthy enough for surgery. For later stages, symptoms may include weight loss, stomach pain, vomiting and yellowed skin.

 

5. Cancer of Gall Bladder and Bile Ducts: Gall Bladder is a small, pear-shaped organ on the right side of the abdomen, just beneath your liver. The Gall Bladder stores bile, a digestive fluid produced by your liver. Cancer that begins in Gall Bladder is known as Gall Bladder Cancer. Chances of recovery are very good when its diagnosed at early stages but it is mostly diagnosed at later stages when the prognosis is often very poor. The gallbladder's size and location make it easier for cancer to grow undetected. The most common symptoms at later stages are abdominal pain, bloating, fever, weight loss, nausea, and yellowed skin.

 

6. Colon and Rectal Cancer: Colon Cancer also known as Large Bowel Cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths. It is cancer that affects the colon and rectum. Colon Cancer is malignant cancer that can spread to other parts of the body and damage them. Due to medical advancements, colon cancer can be diagnosed at early stages by screening. Its common symptoms include changes in bowel habits, changes in stool consistency, blood in the stool and abdominal discomfort.

 

7. Appendiceal Cancer: The appendix is a vestigial organ lying in between the small and the large intestine called the colon. The most common type is the mucin secreting adenocarcinoma. This cancer is unique in the sense that in case it ruptures it causes the spread of the mucin (gelatinous material) containing cancerous tissue in the peritoneal cavity. This is called Pseudomyxoma peritoneii. It is slow-growing cancer that usually does not metastasize. Its most common symptoms are abdominal fullness, distension, pain, and vomiting.

 

Common Symptoms of Abdominal Cancer:

    1. Fatigue
    2. Weight loss
    3. Abdominal pain
    4. Fever
    5. Loss of appetite
    6. Night sweats

 

Digestive and gastrointestinal tract symptoms:

    1. Constipation
    2. Bloating
    3. Diarrhea
    4. Change in bowel movements
    5. Gas
    6. Vomiting
    7. Nausea
    8. Rectal bleeding (bleeding in motion)
    9. Abdominal swelling or mass
    10. Jaundice

 

Causes of Abdominal Cancer:

    1. Esophageal cancers are directly linked to smoking, hot beverages, gastroesophageal reflux disease and achalasia cardia.
    2. Stomach cancer may occur due to Helicobacter pylori infection, prolonged gastric ulcer and polyps.
    3. Pancreatic cancer is linked with excessive smoking, obesity, diabetes, chronic pancreatitis and a family history of genetic syndromes.
    4. Liver cancer develops because of certain liver disease types, including chronic infections with HV or HBV, excessive alcohol consumption, all leading to cirrhosis of the liver.
    5. Cancer of the gallbladder is linked to long-standing and large gall stones.
    6. Colorectal cancer may occur because of many reasons including adenomatous polyps and ulcerative colitis

 

What are the risk factors related to abdominal cancer?

Some risk factors may develop abdominal cancer. So, one should keep a close check on these factors that can be harmful to your overall health. These include:

    1. Heavy alcohol consumption or alcoholism
    2. Eating low fiber, a high-fat diet filled with salty and smoked foods.
    3. Obesity
    4. Smoking
    5. Bacteria infection
    6. Genetic factors
    7. Autoimmune diseases like Ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease

 

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